Masters in Business Management: Career and Salary Facts

A graduate-level degree in business management, commonly known as a Master of Business Administration, can prepare you for a career as a chief executive officer or a management position in a large organization. Read on to learn more about career options and potential earnings. Schools offering Business Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Careers Are Available for a MBA in Management?

There are several career fields available when an MBA comes with a specialty in management. A number of accountants today obtain that MBA so they can get top jobs and eventually run departments or companies. Almost all top executives of every major company hold an MBA of some type, especially ones in management where they learn to read and understand financial reports. Duties for these positions in include keeping up with federal and state laws concerning a company's finances, interviewing prospective employees, negotiating contracts with other companies, and setting company goals along with overseeing day to day operations.

MBAs are often available with concentrations in specific subject areas, like finance, project management or nonprofit management. Another option for business-related management education is the Master of Science in Human Resources (MSHR). These degrees require completion of anywhere from 36-60 credit hours, and sometimes include internships. If you cannot attend classes full-time on campus, you may be able to earn your degree through part-time study or distance education opportunities. The following chart gives you an overview of what you need to know about entering this field.

Degree Required Master's degree
Key Responsibilities Examine clients' financial records, prepare tax documents, advise in on investment, loss, and profit
Establish company goals, manage day to day running, analyze financials and other reports
Licensure/Certification Required Licensure required in some areas, certification available
Job Outlook (2018-2028) 6% growth* (accountants)
6% growth* (top executives)
Median Salary (2018) $70,500* (accountants)
$189,600* (top executives)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

What Jobs Can I Find?

A Master of Business Administration or Master of Science in Human Resources can lead to management positions in companies large and small. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), with an MBA, you could find work in the financial sector as a financial manager, responsible for investment activities, preparation and delivery of financial reports and budget preparation ( With a master's degree in human resources, you could find yourself working in the human resources department for a company of any size.

What Can I Expect to Earn?

According to BLS data, pay for top executives varies based on industry, location and other components of compensation packages, like stock options, bonuses and other privileges. For example, the BLS shows that if you worked as an executive in Oklahoma in 2018, you could have earned an average of $157,540, annually, or $75.74 an hour. In the same year, the BLS reported that New Hampshire chief executives earned an average annual wage of $180,250, or $86.66 per hour.

The BLS also provides information on the salaries of business managers in different industries. In 2015, a financial manager working in a technical service earned $170,200 each year, while a financial manager working in government made $113,880 annually.

In the field of human resources, the BLS reported that in 2018, a manager could earn anywhere from $66,870-$201,380 per year, depending on their experience, location and the industry they are working in. For example, if you were to work as a human resources manager in computer systems, you could earn $141,180 per year; if you did the same job in another information service industry, you could earn $165,910 annually, according to BLS data from 2018.

What Certifications Exist?

Once you earn your degree, you may be able to increase your skills with professional certifications, depending on the field you want to work in. For human resource managers, the Human Resource Certification Institute (HRCI) offers four certifications, including the Professional in Human Resources, senior Professional in Human Resources or Global Professional in Human Resources. The HRCI also offers a certification for Professionals or Senior Professionals in Human Resources who seek employment in the State of California ( The amount of time it will take you to complete these programs depends on the certification you wish to obtain, as each curriculum is different.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

MBAs in management can result in careers encompassing a variety of industries. Accounting positions can include plant and facilities managers, operations or production managers, even health services manager, which all require MBAs. Less than a master's degree can secure you a career as a sales or financial manager, but those possessing an MBA will have more opportunities for advancement.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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